What is a surety bond, and why do I need one for my Onsite Sewage System Operation and Maintenance License?
A surety bond is a three-way agreement between a Principal (The individual applying for the Onsite Sewage System Operation and Maintenance License), the Obligee (Whatcom County, Washington), and a surety company that backs the bond. Surety bonds are NOT insurance, and do not cover the Principal from financial liabilities. Instead, it protects the Obligee from any losses or financial obligations in the event that the principal breaches any laws, regulations, ordinances, statutes, or rules pertaining to their licensure.
The regulations, rules, laws, and guidelines for your license are specified in the Whatcom County Code, Chapter 24.05 – On-Site Sewage System Regulations.
You are required to file this bond each year your license is active, and can be issued for 1-3 years. It covers $2,000 of damages for each year, and the costs are as follows:
- 1 year – $100
- 2 years – $175
- 3 years – $250
In the event of a claim against your bond, your surety will make initial payments to the claimant, at which point you are obligated to fully repay the surety. In addition to repayment, your surety company may revoke your bond. If your bond is revoked, your license will be invalid until you file a new surety bond. It is important to avoid any claims against your bond for the aforementioned reasons, as well as that each claim acts as a mark against your “credit” for all future bond applications. If you are unable to secure a surety bond because of past claims, you will be unable to renew your Onsite Sewage System Operation and Maintenence License.
1 year - $100
2 years - $175
3 years - $250
Your bond will be issued within 1-3 days after you submit a completed application and payment.